South Dakota…animals, hiking, beer, biking (not in that order)

5 days in South Dakota. This was going to be a good road trip! We didn’t plan any part of the trip. Hubby and I went in with no expectations…just our gear, an iPhone, some books, and a map. We camped, hiked, biked, and drank good beer. We weren’t sure of what types of beers we would find there so we brought a cooler full of Colorado microbrews just in case. Couldn’t hurt, right?!

The first day we went to the Wind Cave National Park and did the touristy thing. The cave went 200 ft below the surface and it was pretty cool but we really wanted to be away from the crowds. We were really enjoying just driving around and looking at the landscape that SD had to offer. It was very neat to see bison all around.

That night we camped in the national forest nearby. We took some 4 wheel drive roads to get there through the fog, mist, and cold. We set up camp, made sausage with peppers and onions, and broke into our CO beer stash! Great night. It was beautiful with the fog rolling in and we thought it was funny that it was so cold there at the end of May.

The next morning we headed to the Badlands. We, of course, took the back roads to get there and saw more bison, antelope, deer and for some reason a wild mule. What?

We found a fairly empty camp ground on the backside of the park and decided to stay. We set up our tent, went for a hike, and then just hung out at camp since there was so much to see. A couple of bison decided to give us a show. So we pulled up some chairs, cracked open a couple of beers and settled in. One bison would challenge the other and then they would chase each other through our campsite. It was hysterical. This went on for most of the evening. We watch one bison roll around in the dirt while a whole herd were grazing on the hillside. It was quite the room with a view.

The next day we drove to the other side of Badlands to do some hiking. Hubby spotted a coyote (right side of pic) stalking a bison. What was this silly coyote thinking…

Next we saw some wild turkeys…

Then we saw mountain goats…

The fourth day we headed to Spearfish (great little town). We hiked the Crow Peak Trail to the peak which was at 5,760 (3,240 ft below where our house sits, he he). It was a 7 mile hike straight up and back down. Beautiful views of the Black Hills from the top.

That night we sampled some awesome brews at Crow Peak Brewing. We sat on the 2nd floor balcony which had pretty decent views of the area we had just hiked. I had an amazing Imperial IPA called 5 Decade. Hubby enjoyed the Black Hills Black Ale.

And the last day was just some mountain biking near the town of Custer. We biked for about 2 hours and then decide to head home and pick up our pup from “doggie camp”. We really missed the little guy and couldn’t wait to get back to Colorado.

It was truly a great trip and I think things go better when you have no expectations. When you just see what happens and are free to explore or stay a little longer. Here’s to another successful road-trip and many more ahead!


~ by willtriforbeer on June 10, 2012.

One Response to “South Dakota…animals, hiking, beer, biking (not in that order)”

  1. Loved the animal pictures. This is a nice way to keep your memories and I like to be able to see what you’ve done. Thanks

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